COVID-19 response

Allocation: US$15 million

Years: 2020-2021

Grant agent: UNICEF

Key documents: Application and program document

The US$15 million grant will help the Ministry of Education:

  • set up a crisis management team
  • provide distance learning programs through radio, television and online education programs
  • ensure psycho-social support to children experiencing stress, anxiety and trauma caused by school closures.
  • re-stocking textbooks in priority locations when schools reopen
  • remedial classes to target students who have fallen behind, including those with special educational needs.

In late March 2020, the UNICEF office in Mozambique received a GPE grant of US$70,000 to support the Ministry of Education with planning its COVID-19 response.

Education in Mozambique

In recent years, Mozambique has made good progress in the education sector. The National Education System Law was revised in December 2018 and established a new structure for the sector, increasing mandatory (and free) education from seven to nine years.

The duration of the education cycles was restructured, reducing primary education from seven to six years, and increasing secondary education from five to six years. The law also recognizes, for the first time, preschool as a sub-sector of education, although not a requirement to enter primary.

These changes and more investment and government commitment to keep education expenditure high have led to the progress.

Yet, efficiency challenges still plaque the system. There are still almost two million primary-school-age children not attending school. More than one third of students drop out before Grade 3 and less than half complete primary, well below the average in Sub-Saharan African countries.

In upper primary, the gender gap increases, as more girls abandon school prematurely. Due to several factors including high levels of teacher absenteeism, children only have 74 out of the 190 expected school days in the year.

In terms of access, only 3.5% of children between 3 and 5 years were enrolled in preschool in 2019, but the number of students in primary education doubled between 2004 and 2018.

Aligned with the national and international development Agenda, the education sector plan (ESP) 2020-2029 aims to train ''citizens with knowledge, skills, moral, civic and patriotic values capable of contributing to the development of a cohesive society adapted to the constantly changing world”. Its three priorities are to:

  1. Ensure inclusion and equity in access, participation, and retention by securing all children, youth, and adults’ access to a full cycle of school readiness, primary and lower secondary education.
  2. Ensure the quality of learning by making sure that children, youth, and adults acquire basic literacy, numeracy, and life skills
  3. Ensure transparent, participatory, efficient, and effective governance by enhancing the capacities of ministry of education’s staff to enable education sector planners and managers to practice evidence-based policy and strategy.

The plan also takes into account natural disasters, which affected the implementation of the previous plan, and includes a stronger gender focus across all priorities.

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Latest grant

Development objective: Increase learning readiness and girls’ retention in upper grades of basic education
Allocation: US$140,000,000
Years: 2021-2026
Grant agent: WB
Utilization: US$19,613,170

The program supported by the US$140 million grant is a major effort to address the country’s education challenges and supports:

  1. Readiness and learning for girls and boys in early grades of primary school
  2. Girls’ retention in later grades of primary and their transition to lower secondary
  3. Efficiency of teacher allocation and use.

 The program has 4 components.

  1. Improve learning outcomes for girls and boys in the first three grades of primary education. Two subcomponents focus on school readiness and improved reading skills in Portuguese for children in grades 1 – 3.
  2. Increase access and retaining girls in the last years of primary education and supporting their transition to lower secondary, by:
  • Upgrading primary schools to include lower secondary and upgrading infrastructure and sanitation and hygiene facilities.
  • Strengthening the quality and expanding the scale of distance learning (DL) to include lower secondary and work with communities to attract more girls into DL.
  • Implementing a sexual and reproductive health education program and gender-based violence (GBV) awareness and mitigation in upper primary and lower secondary education schools.
  1. Improve system efficiency in monitoring education outcomes and introduce a results-based financing program at the district level to improve efficiency in the allocation of teachers, reduce teachers’ absenteeism and boost girls’ retention, through:
  • Strengthening capacity of MINEDH’s Directorate of Planning to collect and analyze education statistics
  • Implement results-based financing to improve education outcomes.
  1. Project management, monitoring and evaluation.

US$20 million accelerated grant

The US$20 million accelerated grant funds an emergency education program aligned with the long term education in emergencies strategy to promote access to and quality of a safe and inclusive education for all boys and girls of school age during an emergency.

It builds on the equity and rights-based approach stressing that vulnerable children do not lose their right to a holistic education due to conflict or natural disasters.

The program has 6 components:

  1. Classroom construction & rehabilitation with gender-friendly sanitation and hygiene facilities:
    • rebuild 600 damaged classrooms and building temporary alternative classrooms using Building-Back-Better (BBB) Standards
    • offer technical training on BBB standards to Ministry of Education and Human Development staff, construction firms and auditors
    • build girl-friendly sanitation infrastructure.
  2. School feeding program for children in affected areas:
    • distribute food at 204 schools in the provinces of Cabo Delgado, Zambézia, Sofala e Manica, benefiting 91,000 students
    • supply kitchen equipment and material
    • strengthen capabilities of the education services and the schools
    • distribute communication materials on the program in the affected regions.
  3. Support learning through the Direct School Support program. 2.1 million students in 2,278 schools in the provinces of Cabo Delgado, Manica, Nampula, Sofala and Zambezia will receive a grant of between US$0.83 – US$1.62 to help affected schools have more flexibility in meeting post emergency needs. The program will use the existing decentralized financial system available in the country since 2013 and existing guidelines.
  4. Provision of hygiene kits for 13,500 girls in the affected districts to:
    • raise individual and social awareness about the negative perceptions around menstruation, and raise awareness of menstrual hygiene
    • achieve an overall reduction in absenteeism and an increase in the enrollment of girls.
  5. Capacity building on emergency education, disaster risk reduction and psychosocial support to:
    • strengthen the resilience of teachers and students affected by the natural disasters to respond and recover from disasters
    • enhance the technical capabilities and skills of the provincial and district emergency focal points on risk reduction and emergency management at the schools
    • elaborate and implement the school’s emergency preparedness plan with the school community.
  6. Strengthening coordination, management, monitoring and evaluation by:
    • training staff on the collection, analysis and presentation of data concerning the program, and training selected staff and partners on resilient construction
    • establishing the schools’ council of maintenance, materials, and equipment
    • monitoring classroom construction and organizing monitoring visits and meetings to evaluate the outcomes of the program.


All amounts are in US dollars.

Grant type Years Allocations Utilization Grant agent  
Accelerated funding 2020-2023 20,000,000 8,854,787 UNICEF  
COVID-19 2020-2021 15,000,000 14,797,016 UNICEF  
Program implementation and Multiplier 2021-2026 140,000,000 19,613,170 WB Progress report
Program implementation 2015-2019 55,870,000 55,870,000 WB Completion report
2011-2015 90,000,000 90,000,000 WB Completion report
2008-2010 79,000,000 79,000,000 WB  
Sector plan development 2019-2020 260,529 260,529 UNESCO  
Program development 2019-2020 283,000 282,996 WB  
2014-2015 199,155 199,155 WB  
  Total 400,612,684 268,877,653    
Data last updated: March 17, 2023

As part of its investment in civil society advocacy and social accountability efforts, GPE’s Education Out Loud fund is supporting the Movimento de Educação Para Todos for the 2019-2021 period.

This builds on 11 years of Civil Society Education Fund (CSEF) support to national education coalitions for their engagement in education sector policy dialogue.

GPE had provided the Movimento de Educação Para Todos with a grant from the CSEF to support its engagement in education sector policy dialogue and citizens’ voice in education quality, equity, and financing and sector reform.

Last updated September 10, 2021